Anna Blake's Blog (319)

Itching and Shedding.

Finally and at last, the ice on the pond has thawed and birds have returned. It’s our spring break.

My elderly, domestic ducks waddle off to the pond with a very officious gait, business-like in their bathing.  They quack around with wild ducks, exchanging opinions. Mine are easy to tell apart, they swim much lower in the water and act like they own the place.  They return to the yard in late afternoon for dinner- the old gelding shares his with them. It has been a long,…

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Added by Anna Blake on March 25, 2011 at 8:30am — 4 Comments

Climbing Back On-

Riders know this lesson; if you get bucked off you have to climb back on. That’s the rule. Horse or rider are better for it. They say that the hardest thing about riding is hitting the ground (sigh) but I disagree. The recovery is often more challenging.

I think we are afraid of what we know- more than the unknown. Experience makes it personal. Once we have…

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Added by Anna Blake on March 18, 2011 at 8:37am — No Comments

Taking the Blame.



It’s generally considered good manners in the barn to graciously take the blame anytime your horse is less than spectacular, and give your horse all the credit after a good ride. But it is more than manners, it is also a rider’s responsibility.…

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Added by Anna Blake on March 11, 2011 at 9:30am — 2 Comments

A Lesson in Change.



The head of the herd at Infinity Farm is the kind of horse you might call Grandfather- with reverence. He was a flashy something in his day; what he lacked in confidence he made up for with bravado. We made a pair and a quarter century later, we have both softened and matured with age. He rules the ranch, from the ducks (he shares his grain with them) on up. Not all barns are as…

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Added by Anna Blake on March 4, 2011 at 9:12am — No Comments

Embrace a Career Change



I’ve traveled in all directions in the last few months- looking at potential lesson horses. I want to rescue the skinny ones. I try to guess how much retraining will be needed for others. The right horse…

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Added by Anna Blake on February 26, 2011 at 7:34am — 4 Comments

What Llamas Teach About Horse Training

“Horses hate llamas.” Lots of horse people told me that, but by then my gelding was babysitting my first cria and the party was in full swing.

Llamas are brave and curious. Mine hike with packs, do llama agility, and Sebastian was a ring bearer in a wedding. (At the reception he confused the Mother-of-the-Bride’s corsage for an hors d’oeuvre. It was an…

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Added by Anna Blake on February 18, 2011 at 9:30am — 2 Comments

Horse Cruelty, Ignored.

Anna Sewell authored Black Beauty in 1877. She wrote the book to educate about animal cruelty and promote a more understanding approach to horses. She wrote,

“My doctrine is this, that if we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop, and do nothing, we make ourselves sharers in the guilt.”

Most times we don’t have the power to actually right wrongs. It is…

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Added by Anna Blake on February 11, 2011 at 8:00am — 1 Comment

The Peaceable Kingdom in Winter.

Infinity Farm has always boasted an extended family of many species, so the nickname was obvious- The Peaceable Kingdom. I love that painting by Edward Hicks. He was a Quaker minister who painted his spiritual truth in a simple way that resonates with me profoundly.…

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Added by Anna Blake on February 4, 2011 at 9:30am — No Comments

Time Travel with Horses.

I love this photo- it’s education in a trickle down sort of way. These fillies are learning the fine art of wither itching from my retired gelding- when he speaks everyone leans close and listens. He is the Master.

Maybe learning takes lifetimes… This week I have been reading…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 28, 2011 at 2:00pm — No Comments

Helmets and Freedom

A friend of mine volunteered at a nursing home. One of the patients there was always talking about riding and my friend thought that maybe I could come along and talk horses with her. That was what I knew when I entered her room.

The walls were covered with horse pictures from magazines, a couple of medical machines were humming and sighing,…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 21, 2011 at 9:30am — 7 Comments

Dressage, Natural Horsemanship and Android Technology



Woody Allen says, “I am at two with nature.” That pretty much describes how I feel about technology. Embracing the tech world for me is like enjoying a violent allergy attack.

Having…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 14, 2011 at 9:30am — No Comments

A Filly Writes Her Farrier

Dear Mr. Farrier,

Remember me? My friends call me Clara. You may call me Claro d’Luna. Please pronounce it with a Spanish accent.

I…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 7, 2011 at 9:30am — 3 Comments

Holiday Messages...

 ”Peace on Earth”, -The Wild Texas Wind, aka Windy, Infinity Farm Matriarch.

 

  “Good Will to All” -Holliday, Infinity Farm Homeland…

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Added by Anna Blake on December 24, 2010 at 7:00pm — No Comments

A Pony for Christmas

 

Who hasn’t begged for a pony for Christmas? My generation scrutinized the color plates of horse breeds in the H volume of our aged Encyclopedia Britannica. Some of us read Black Beauty a dozen times. We held Man from Snowy River film festivals at home. Kids today haunt websites like…

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Added by Anna Blake on December 17, 2010 at 2:30pm — No Comments

Holiday Half-Halt.

“The threat of Christmas hung in the air…”

This is a stressful time of the year. Some of the stress is good stress; children’s programs at church, parties, presents, all kinds of cookies, and family dinners. Some of the stress is not so good; unreal expectations, emotional strain, expense, time pressures, and family dinners.

Humans like routines as much…

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Added by Anna Blake on December 10, 2010 at 4:30pm — 2 Comments

When I Die, Can I Come Back as Your Horse?

I have heard that line a few too many times. I guess it’s meant to be funny. I was flattered once when a vet said it to introduce me. That got a smile.

The least flattering time I heard this re-incarnation plan was while I was rubbing mineral ice on my horse’s inner thigh. He had torn a muscle and was in his second month of stall rest. The man…

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Added by Anna Blake on December 3, 2010 at 10:00am — No Comments

Words from Edgar Rice Burro on Thanks-giving.

“Slow down. No one’s tombstone ever says ‘I wish I would have mucked faster.’”…

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Added by Anna Blake on November 26, 2010 at 10:00am — 1 Comment

Babysitter at the Barn

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Added by Anna Blake on November 19, 2010 at 2:00pm — 2 Comments

Weathering Colic

There is a front coming in tonight. Clouds are moving low and fast, the wind is howling around corners, as the temperature drops like a rock. Spring and fall bring this kind of barometer-bouncing weather.

Worst of all, the horses are acting unsettled as the atmosphere. There is a name for this kind of weather, but I don’t like to say it out…

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Added by Anna Blake on November 12, 2010 at 9:00am — 3 Comments

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